Red armies are on parade
Here they march
High kicks – high stakes
Red armies are everywhere

Ribbons and medals on display
Arrayed in braid
Heads to right – guns gripped tight
Supreme Leader waves with glee

Their missiles are aimed this way
Hear them fly
Rickety – Rackety
Long range rockets on standby

They’re not the type to fall or faint
The outside world is weird and quaint
Only shown what’s not and what ain’t
They’ll one day give us an awful fright

If Trump has his way
We’ll chase them away
Nuke ’em today
These red armies on parade

Red armies on parade…
Red armies on parade…
Red armies on parade…
(fade to inevitable ending)


entryimage HA !! HA !!

(based on Pink Elephants on Parade
from the movie Dumbo !!)

Severn Bridge

so this is where it all changes
where salt water turns to fresh
balanced between two worlds
adrift on the flooding tide
holding on to a raft of indecisions
to go back or move on?
and wondering how it must feel
jumping from a tall bridge
hitting hard water

they say it’s the fall that kills
not the drowning

like that funny feeling as a child
standing on a cliff in Cornwall
feeling pulled towards the edge
father grabbed me and shouted
how could you be so stupid girl?
the family holidays, the yellow dress
sunny summers all in the past now
a tangled overgrown mess
oblique and rewinding

it should never have ended here
we were meant to drive into the sunset

PicMonkey Collage

(bridges and cliffs are notorious suicide spots)

On Reaching Oxwich Bay: A Collaboration of Thoughts

This world is not worthy of me.
No, that’s not right,
that’s not what I had meant to say.
But you must have thought it?
…to have said it?

I was wondering if people see things the way I do.
Those rock outcrops for example,
the way they break through the varied hues
of leafy greens.
You keep lifting your sunglasses from your eyes.
Why? Do you not trust the colours?

I was just checking that’s all.
The smell of gorse is overwhelming don’t you think?
Coconut and warm butter?
Sweet dessert wine perhaps?
I feel a need to stretch out on the warm sand.
The beach is too long, too beige.

You can’t be bothered, is that what you’re saying?
To get to the end?
Where the hotel interrupts the natural world
with the clatter of stainless cutlery
and the overfed whelps of day-trip visitors?
You could put it that way I guess.

The tide will wash away our footsteps.
Remember the burial chamber and lime kilns?
The stone ruins of Pennard Castle on the hill?
You wondered if Dylan Thomas had written about them.
I wondered did I see things in the same way.
As Thomas?

In a way.
It’s difficult to say.
Look, the cattle have followed us down The Pill.
It comes from the Welsh word ‘pwl’
meaning an inlet, harbour, or pool
like a creek or tidal inlet off a river or channel.

Very bucolic. A pastoral poem no less.
You know I should’ve said
I’m not worthy of this world.
A slip of the tongue?
My footsteps don’t fit with the past.
They will never add anything more.

Is that good or bad?
I don’t know. How am I supposed to know?
My words cannot compare to that stonechat’s song.
His voice and beauty overwhelms me,
throws me out to sea and drowns me.
Another passer-by will take my place in time.

Image result for stonechat

(After a weekend walk on South Gower, Wales between Southgate and Oxwich:
Collaboration of Thoughts is a conversation between myself and my inner voice
whilst following in the imagined footsteps of Dylan Thomas and all those who may
have passed that way before me and will pass in the future. Sunday was also International Dylan Thomas Day – the anniversary of the date when Under Milk
Wood was first read on stage at 92Y The Poetry Center, New York in 1953)


He gave his girl a wink
She cheesy grinned back at him
Sometimes the planets aligned
It all made sense

the time
the place
the high from the drink
the smoke in the air
the banter
the laughter
the way forward into the future

It didn’t matter what lay beyond the black walls of the valley
It didn’t matter that he called this shithole home
Or the hangover and bad head that waited for him tomorrow

He had his girl next to him
She was cheesy grinning with a bottle of Vods
Cigarettes to share
Fingering her hair

The road ahead was clear despite the rain
Despite the blurry vision that crept across his eyes in waves
Like a Venetian blind that opened and closed
Opened and closed

Two eyes
Two valves
Two ventricles
Four if you counted hers
His and her hearts

He grinned back
Cheesy grinned
His girl leant over and kissed his cheek
The planets aligned

It all made sense

Sangria Sunsets

Her spine was a pink lobster tail on the sand
Curls and whorls under a fat Majorcan moon
He traced her vertebrae one by one
Moved his finger in S-shaped waves
She laughed and stretched, the tide came in
Touched her toes, the soles of her feet
Her soul that needed touching, stroking
That made her giggle too, like his jokes
She’d heard them all before but she didn’t care
Not when the Mediterranean Sea plied her thighs
Or when salt encrusted her belly like a suckling pig
With a ring through its snout, her flesh
Not when Lover Boy’s hands played with her nipples

Oh gosh no, oh god no, oh fuck don’t stop no
And gosh no, they hadn’t

Not since meeting in the Pink Coconut bar and
Not making it back to her holiday apartment
Round the back against the bins
Her sunburned shoulders cooled by the night
And Lover Boy’s Spanish kisses like Sangria sunsets
On her English tower block London skin
They’d made it to the beach with a bottle of something
Strong and intoxicating that made her beats per minute heart
Pound, thumb, disco dance and pelvis thrust
She never wanted this moment to end
She only ever wanted pure escape
If only ever for 7 days with a bunch of girlfriends
Wherever they were, she didn’t much care

Oh gosh no, oh god no, oh fuck don’t stop no
And gosh, Lover Boy hadn’t.


“nutmeg” he                shouted

there was no answer……………
so he called “nutmeg”    again

but  he couldnot     remember

why?     why was he calling  ?
why was he sat  on a bench  ?

surrounded by   greenhedges
feet shuffling on    greygravel

the clouds  dishevelled  above
the ground     opening   below

his brain a maze of  pathways
deadend doormats untrodden

he called again……………………..
was swallowed……………………..

Fun in a Fiat 500

Two blonde girls in a pink Fiat 500

How we love you dashing through
texting – talking
laughing – driving

Too short skirts you little flirts
snapchat – chitchat
facetime – online

Two blonde girls in a pink Fiat 500

Speeding by with painted eyes
boyfriends – girlfriends
bartends - weekends

Fresh from the gym all fit and thin
skinny ribs – tiny tits
lovely bum – bubble gum

Two blonde girls in a pink Fiat 500

Phone distracts her, misses corner
wreckage – young age
big mess – hopeless

No more invites, floral tributes
sign of cross – what a big loss
parents mourn – both firstborn

Two blonde girls in a pink Fiat 500

Having fun and dying young
such short lives – never made wives
what a pity – life's so shitty

(picture courtesy Mail Online)

on the edge

he felt the crisp wad of banknotes between his fingers as his hand lay limp on the edge of the bed

he hated himself

he squeezed the newly printed greenbacks in his palm and imagined the smell in his nostrils fresh that day from the ATM

even from here he could smell her overpowering sticky wet scent on his fingers spoiling the notes

he thought about buying a new pair of boots and cared less what the body lying next to him was dreaming about

he hated himself and he hated her even more

this night was done for him

he would use the bathroom before he left

hang his flaccid cock and matted hairs on the edge of the basin and wash it clean with the tiny bar of gritty motel soap


he hated the disgusting animal smell that would linger with him for the next 24 hours

in the room next door through the thin partition wall he could hear the sound of screaming and wondered if it was from pleasure or pain

fake or real

and how many voices?

there had been voices of all ages all night long coming and going between the slam of car and motel doors and beer cans crushed and bottles smashed and fists meeting jaws

but some of that had been on the edge of his dreams

he felt the claustrophobic fall of days crash into winter’s icy grip like a hand around his neck

like the hand around her neck as he had hard fucked her knowing all along he was venting his aggression on this woman who deserved none of it

none of him

he read the words on the picture hung askew above the television that told him to live for the joy of today and the promise of tomorrow


amen to that

two seagulls flew over crashing waves towards a sweeping sandy beach with cliffs in the background but the whole scene had faded into a washed out pale blue

he heard the rumble of utility van engines firing up in the adjacent truck stop parking lot and instinctively smelt the fumes

and he hated himself and her smell and her shabby hole and this room in this godforsaken mid-western town where the streets were lined with combines and bright red grain conveyors


corn shuckers

was it really so bad that he thought this way?

with so much hate for himself and the world?

that he wanted to drive his 18-wheeler through an intersection red light with his eyes closed and his heart racing pumping blood to his exploding brain?


he felt this had to stop but knew not how or why

he felt the crisp wad of banknotes between his fingers unfurl and slip to the floor one by one as he opened his fingers as if releasing them from the trigger of a gun

the body next to him stirred and moaned like a wild creature in pain

it reminded him of the hind he had shot last year at the tail end of the season

the bullet from his Weatherby Mark V deer rifle had shattered its thigh and brought it crashing to the ground on the edge of a stand of golden aspen

when he’d reached the felled animal it was still but alive

he’d looked down into its eye and felt nothing

he stood with his legs apart and pissed for a long while

he zipped up and left

the greenbacks lay scattered on the floor

the woman’s bludgeoned  brains splattered on the wall

the sunrise filled the sky

he felt on the edge of something he couldn’t control

on the edge of a day he couldn’t define


The Master of Rituals

his floorboarded bones are rusty nailed jointed

unoiled and wrapped in stiff wads of coiled rags

arms incorrectly angled end with scuffed knuckles

woodsmoked fingers and pipe tar bittendown nails


he is racked with medieval torture pains

a brickly arched back is nauseously slime coated

mortared graveyard teeth set in crooked abandonments

behind methylated breath-fumes his misty arcane eyes dwell


one legged he shuffles with a fossilised slum dweller ambiguity

his inner tinnitus voices weep through welted tunnelled scars

the castellated storms that rage around his corridors of power

stalk death with every eerie echoed clack of his knotted stick


and the castle children taunt:

“rotten leg!

rotten spine!

ya! ya! Barquentine!”



once upon a riverbank

once upon a riverbank

we lit matches

watched the water ebb

and wake

the smoke dissolved in effervescence

the crescent moon took its place

the stories we told of distant stars

times of laughter

times of hate

like embers in a sizzling cauldron

skewed remembrance from afar

no return

no sense of purpose

left to wander

to our fate

once upon

a riverbank